Sunday, January 15, 2012

Your Age And Your Attractiveness


Notes:
  1. These curves are based on observation and careful thought, not empirical data.
  2. Internal attractiveness consists of personality, femininity, openness, etc.
  3. External attractiveness consists of weight, natural looks, hair, clothes, etc.
  4. Percentage of potential means the level a woman achieves relative to what she could achieve, taking into account uncontrollable limitations such as body shape (not to be confused with weight), facial structure, etc.
  5. Combined attractiveness is a weighted average of internal and external attractiveness. 
    • Internal attractiveness is weighted at 40 % importance.
    • External attractiveness is weighted at 60 % importance.
  6. Don't pay too much attention to the values on the vertical axis. What matter more here are the rough values on the horizontal axis, i.e. when the peaks or changes occur.
  7. This is typical, not representative of all women. See this page for example variations.
  8. Other sources have real studies that are interesting and tend to agree with this illustration.

While I think this plot can largely speak for itself, I do want to highlight and qualify a few things.

The graph is not meant to hone in on the exact age of peak attractiveness. Don't draw conclusions based on the peak (A) occurring at 32 rather than 29 or 33. Instead, draw conclusions based on the peak occurring at 32 rather than 22 or 26 (which are more typical assumptions). More importantly, consider that although physical attractiveness peaks at one point (C), internal attractiveness plateaus later (D). While the "late" (i.e. post-30) peak in overall attractiveness is likely to draw some criticism, I doubt that such criticism is honest, or considers a woman's internal attractiveness. Furthermore, a recent study seems to back up this conclusion.

I shaped the curves for internal and external attractiveness separately, without giving consideration to each's effect on the combined curve. When I plotted internal and external attractiveness combined, and saw the "lull" in the early twenties (A), I was a little surprised. But upon reflection, it made sense. The "lull" is the point where a girl looks beautiful but has yet to come into herself. She is hot but boring to spend time with. So many girls in their early twenties are this way. Their overall attractiveness stalls until they develops their personality throughout their twenties. Some women never make this internal development, as illustrated in one of the example variations, posted here.

Notice that the full potential for combined attractiveness is never reached, because the peak of internal and external attractiveness do not occur simultaneously. While this is not always the case, I think it is often so, because women tend to spend their effort on looks or personality at different times in their life.

Notice, too, how the decline in external attractiveness is ameliorated by the increase in internal attractiveness, flattening out the decline.

Read Next: American Women Are the Best

Related Posts
1. Men and Sexual Variety
2. Don't Let A Guy Waste Your Most Eligible Years
3. Some Older Women Are Smart
4. What Men Think About Older Women

100 comments:

  1. I am somewhat surprised by this!
    Firstly, the external attractiveness. Now I see this varies personally, as some girls start "getting" their own appearance later or don't find their form until their mid-twenties, but in general I've heard that women's faces and bodies look their absolute best around 18-19. Especially for a genuine beautiful girl, this is when everything is at its best, and one would think men pick up on that since the fertile age seem to matter.
    Secondly - the internal attractiveness. I can absolutely see that people over a certain age have had time to "come into their own", find their interests and make more out of their lives. I don't always see it myself though, I know plenty intelligent women 50+, but not so many in their 30s. In fact I have several single girlfriends in their 30s and 40s and it's always pissed me off when they go on about how confident they are and that "once you hit 30 you will rule the world", when I can see that deep down they are as insecure as teenagers, and with just as shallow interests, if not more. I don't know any women in their 30s who reads advanced literature or genuinely cares about arts. I think you're either that type of person or you're not.

    My real point: when I've heard men say they prefer younger women over older (usually around25, not 20), it is a personality issue as much as about looks, but not personality the way the graph shows. It's more about life experience, and that women 30+ are less 'fresh', have more baggage and if they are single and have been dating they might have become slightly cynical. They can be opinionated just for the sake of it and are less able to adjust to a man. That's just what I've heard from men anyway =)
    Otherwise good results, it means the best is yet to come for me :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Again, don't place too much weight on the values; pay more attention to the relation of one curve to the other. If you look at the other examples I posted, you will see how much it can vary.

      Delete
    2. "women 30+ are less 'fresh', have more baggage and if they are single and have been dating they might have become slightly cynical. They can be opinionated just for the sake of it and are less able to adjust to a man"

      I am in my early 20s and can tell you this isn't a phenomenon exclusive to older women. I have several friends who are single and have so much emotional baggage and are so cynical about dating that they go to therapy for it (!) I think it's the product of a culture that tells girls they are special/beautiful/perfect no matter what, and that they shouldn't have to compromise for anything. The end result is women that have ridiculously high standards and refuse to adjust them. Unfortunately they usually end up cynical and disillusioned after years of disappointment.

      I suspect a lot of women invest nothing in their internal attractiveness. At least not in a way that would benefit their relationships (sure reading Proust and having an appreciation for impressionism makes you more interesting, but it doesn't make you any more capable of the charitable love required to sustain a relationship). And why should they, when they have been told their whole lives that they are perfect just the way they are, and live in a society that values youth and beauty and all that is superficial above everything else.

      Delete
    3. I agree with your point that modern culture emphasizes physical beauty and youth too much. Perhaps for a reason - this blog pays a lot of attention to what women look like, as it is important to men (and there is no way escaping that).
      I don't agree that modern culture tells women that they are perfect though. Media tells women that they are not skinny enough with large enough breasts. Perhaps magazines like Cosmopolitan tell girls that "you're fabulous!" but there are limits to how much your self esteem increase from reading a magazine directed at everybody. There is also a certain selection of girls reading those magazines, I certainly don't.
      I think TV shows like Sex and the City are partly to blame, as they say you can sleep around, generate no savings, spend all your money on shoes and turn 35 and expect a man to want to marry you. A lot of girls growing up with that are finding life difficult.

      This is a matter of social circles, the only women I know with those wrong attitudes are primarily 26+. They have been in the game long enough, and been unsuccessful long enough, to grow genuinely cynical. I know some 35+ whom are painfully optimistic, but part of the problem there is that it is forbidden in today's society to talk about what actually matters to men, and that a partying lifestyle and a lot of shagging about WILL make a woman unattractive to men. At least at a younger age there is a smaller chance that a girl has gone down that road.

      Delete
    4. To clarify, when I said our culture tells women they are perfect, I didn't mean that in regards to their looks. There are whole industries that exist solely because they prey on women's fears of being ugly and old, not thin enough, ect. I meant that our culture encourages women to think that they are perfect in terms of personality (internal attractiveness). Our culture tells women it's OK to act however they want so long as they are being "true to themselves". A rather extreme example of this:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQmEd_UeeIk

      99 million views? WTH is right...

      Delete
    5. I do not think this chart applies to minority women because they generally peek 10 yrs older than this chart. I am 40 and look the best I ever have. And when I was younger I was a model and still can be as people tell me.

      Delete
    6. 18-19 is not the peak for women if you are using fertility as the gauge. High risk pregnancies for women include those with a mother under the age of 20. The body doesn't finish fully developing until around that time, which is why the drinking age is 21 (when the liver has finished developing). Prior to that, pregnancy can put stress on a a body that is not finished developing.

      There are higher rates of down syndrome and other mental retardation in babies born to women under 20 than those born to women between 20-35. Then of course, there is emotional maturity & the affects that has on pre-natal care to caring for the infant. All of this effects how physically, mentally & emotionally healthy the child will be.

      A prime mother, if taking into account both the physical & emotional maturity, is probably closer to the 25-35 age range. Post 40 is when the highest risk pregnancies occur, but 35-40 is actually less risky than under age 20.

      See http://www.marchofdimes.com

      Delete
  2. Andrew,

    This is so clever! I know EXACTLY where I am on your curve. So accurate!
    This is uncannily timely for me...I have been examining myself along these lines lately. Thank you for this.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is very encouraging, and the opposite of what I expected it would be.

    Cass.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Trying not to get hung up on numbers here (although difficult, it has to do with age in particular...), the curve describing internal attractiveness seems to be increasing rapidly at a young age but then kind of...stop. A woman will become a lot more interesting once she goes through her late twenties, but after that it doesn't matter so much. The external attractiveness goes steadily down and then very quickly down after a certain point. Which means if you're dealing with women older than 35, or say 40, her external attractiveness will go down twice as fast as her internal goes up. A woman's personality matters a lot in a marriage, but what about after that point again?
    I can't help but think that if I was a single man at 60 or even 70, in good shape, wealthy, attractive, had options with women, why on earth would I be with a woman the same age as me over a woman of 30, if I had a shot with her? Her internal attractiveness will not be that different, only slightly lower, her external attractiveness will be a LOT higher. Your best bet as a 45-60 year old woman is to build a life with a man from the age of 26, so that you have children and a past, something to tie you together. Otherwise, what is it like to be single at that age?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Otherwise, what is it like to be single at that age?"

      I guess pretty frickin' depressing when they read comments like this! Fortunately, most men of 60 or 70 know that they don't realistically have a shot with women younger than young enough to be their DAUGHTERS unless they are *filthy* rich (and filthy rich men are few). More the question is - why would a single woman of 30, in good shape, attractive, great personality, having (a lot of) options with men, be with a man twice or more her age when she can have her pick of men anywhere from 20 - 50? And wouldn't you wonder sometimes if she was only with you for the money and not for you as a person? I hear rich men do worry about that a lot.

      "why on earth would I be with a woman the same age as me over a woman of 30" - perhaps because a lot of people fall in love with individuals, and no one can define what causes someone to be attracted to one person over another person that happens to have the same credentials on paper.

      Delete
    2. "I can't help but think that if I was a single man at 60 or even 70, in good shape, wealthy, attractive, had options with women, why on earth would I be with a woman the same age as me over a woman of 30, if I had a shot with her?"

      You make a good point. Sometimes this does happen. More often though, it does not, and I think the answer is that there is a lot more to a relationship than physical (external) and personal (internal) attractiveness.

      If this were all that mattered, and men had no qualms about breaking the promises they made to be with their first woman (which I'd like to think some men care about), then I think you would definitely see more men trading in the older women for younger ones. This would be a no-brainer, as you suggest.

      But this leaves out any consideration for the bonds formed over time between the man and the women - that is, the investment that each spouse pours into the other as their marriage progresses. The depth of knowledge each one gains about the other is significant. Struggling through hard times to reach a more settled relationship probably carries even more weight. Memories of good times together are highly valuable. Knowing what the other likes in bed takes time to learn and improves a sexual relationship. The man will be heavily invested in a (good) relationship by the time he has any real concerns about her looks or personality. By "trading in" his wife for someone who is better looking and possibly more fun to be around, a man would have to discard everything he has built with his current woman, and start from scratch. The comfort of the relationship he has helped to build would be lost.

      The decision to leave a woman isn't only a matter of her looks and personality, any more than moving out of your old house is only a matter of how old it is starting to look and how much you like it's layout. What about the relationships you have with your neighbors and all the memories you have in those rooms? What about how you know every road to and from that house, the shortcuts, etc.? All your furniture has been bought to match the house, and you made all kinds of custom modifications to the building itself. You know what it costs each month for utilities, all the closest restaurants, how to fix the appliances and where things are located. Likewise, with a woman. A man knows what turns her on, what topics of discussion to avoid, their common interests, how to console her, her strenghts and weaknesses. He's fought with her about X, Y and Z - and she even changed his mind on a couple matters, while after the fifth time he showed her why she was wrong about some other matter. Maybe they spent a vacation together that they still can't believe how great it was (and talk about fondly from time to time). The ties between the two people are - could be - countless.

      The point is that he has learned her ins and outs, and that has taken time, emotional effort, mental effort, maybe even physical effort, all of which he would have to re-spend on a new woman. Over time I think the reasons for staying with a (good) woman dramatically outweigh the reasons for leaving. The difficulty is finding a good one to start with.

      All that being said, I may have understimated the increase in internal attractiveness in the late twenties and overestimated the increase post-30. Not having reached 30 myself, this was a hard thing to gauge.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous - Naturally, majority of men 60 or 70 years do not have a shot with 30 year olds. 50-somethings are more natural to make for comparison. What you are mentioning is basically social pressure - the idea that men are looked down upon for dating someone "young enough to be their daughter". Due to this, a divorced man of 50 is more likely to date a 38 year old than a 28 year old, even if he would prefer the latter, due to social pressure. You cannot even say that the urge to date a 28 year old is unhealthy or shallow - as we see from this graph a 38 year old woman is not necessarily that much more mature or interesting. On top of that we all come as individuals, and I think the "shaming" of men looking for younger women is somewhat exaggerated.

      I'd be interested in seeing this graph for men. I'd assume the internal attractiveness would continue to grow (might also be shifted to the right and the increase starting later), the external attractiveness will also stay high for much longer. Many men are as attractive at 45 as at 30, some even at 55. Their chances with women will obviously be even higher if they are in high status jobs with good salaries, but to say that it is a matter of "golddigging" is very easy and not very well thought out. Being worldly, confident, successful and experienced are assets which are more important to women than to men, and they increase a lot as a man gets older. If a woman is 35 and single and has therefore "missed the boat" when it comes to marrying guys her own age, she will look more towards divorced men whom are slightly older. A woman of 30 may have options, but a single woman of 35 has fewer, no matter how great she is - there are too many single women in this age group, fertility is on strong decline and many of the attractive guys have already settled down (with 27-ish women). When a man gets divorced at 55, it is not uncommon for him to find a women in her thirties. If he is even older, his partner will mostly be too, but rarely the exact same age. I don't want to get into the debate "but we're all different individuals" - that is given, we cannot control who we fall in love with, but the post is actually about age and internal and external attractiveness. Obviously a 60 year old man would not steer away from a 60 year old woman he is attracted to, but I cannot see why he should steer away from a 38 year old if she is in fact interested.

      Andrew - I am not underestimating the value of a long-term relationship, I think what two people have built together is extremely important. Most men know this, and most divorces are also initiated by women. Even if the romance is gone: It is more normal for a man to have an affair and keep it hidden than to actually leave his wife. To keep the family life going even if the spark is gone, seem to be very important to most men, whether it'd be for comfort, the children or to keep up appearances.
      My example was primarily when a man is single or already divorced. If he never settled down or it is no longer an option to be with the woman and he is back on the market, will he not prefer to go 20 years younger than himself? And if a 50 year old woman is single, what do her options look like? If she cannot rely on compatibility, mutual history and having put in emotional effort with a man? How is she supposed to compete with younger women on the dating market when her external attractiveness is decreasing at twice the pace the internal is increasing? I am beginning to think your best bet as a woman is to find the guy at a young age, build a life together and then really work to keep the marriage going.

      Delete
    4. A 50 year old who is back on the market would definitely prefer a woman in her twenties to one in her thirties. But as anonymous said (and you agreed), there are other reasons why he will not - mostly related to what he thinks he is capable of getting. I know a recently divorced guy in his late forties and his self-confidence is so low he wouldn't DREAM of getting a younger woman.

      "but to say that it is a matter of 'golddigging' is very easy and not very well thought out. Being worldly, confident, successful and experienced are assets"

      I agree with this. As you say, some women blame others for being shallow because they like rich guys, but I think it makes perfect sense. Of course it isn't everything, but all else being equal, it is a huge asset.

      "I am beginning to think your best bet as a woman is to find the guy at a young age, build a life together and then really work to keep the marriage going."

      Sounds like a good plan.

      Delete
    5. "I am beginning to think your best bet as a woman is to find the guy at a young age, build a life together and then really work to keep the marriage going."

      This is a good plan for women in their 20's today.

      What about women born between 1965 and 1980, after the sexual revolution, who lived their 20's in the 80's and 90's and were not taught (as women were prior to 1965) how to behave with men, what to plan for and what to expect? Were instead socially encouraged/pressured to be independent, self-reliant, career minded, not tied down with marriage and kids too early but instead told to explore all that life has to offer, and (awful of awfuls) that casual sex was just as much her right to enjoy as a man's? This is one of the legacies of feminism that we are starting to become aware of, and the damage it has done to this generation of women. Surely there is hope however? The graph above of combined attractiveness for a woman at 40 is still encouragingly high - above 90% of potential, if I'm reading that right.

      C.

      Delete
    6. I don't believe most newly single men over 50 would rather date a woman in her twenties than a woman in her thirties, I'm sure a lot would but you here men say very commonly "I prefer a woman around my age". But this is the Internet and most men are living in fairytale land.

      Delete
    7. Yeah. 50+ men should stay away from the young stuff. Old men should be with old women - period

      Delete
    8. Actually, research shows that women who marry later on in life, like after getting a degree, show much higher levels of satisfaction in their marriages, and have a significantly lesser chance of getting divorced.

      Delete
    9. Andrew, I was looking at your graphs and found them really interesting, but I would love to compare the graph showing a man's attractiveness with age, which generally declines at around 31, where his physical appearance deteriorates quite rapidly compared to a woman's due to the linear appearance on the face, burgeoning belly area, thinning hair on top and thickening hair in the nose and ear areas..... As a woman in her fifties looking for a suitable partner, I have to say the logical age for a male partner appears to be 35, thus allowing a a few years to enjoy prior to the sharp decline in physical appearance as they move towards 39-40.

      Delete
    10. I agree that a man's physical attractiveness starts to deteriorate around the early to mid 30s. The fact that most men (where I'm from at least) drink way too much and don't tend to take care of their skin plays a big role in this.

      Delete
    11. Men over 50+ don't date women under 35 (or even in their 30s) because the women don't want them!

      Men can continue to delude themselves that they are attractive well into middle age while their female peers are not dried up hags, but sorry guys, I will not lie to you.
      As a 30 yr old woman, a 50 year old man looks like DAD to me. You are not attractive.
      Let me repeat, 50+ year old men: You are not attractive.

      If a woman my age is with you, then she is using you & actually finds you sexually repugnant.
      Now I'm sure older women will still find you attractive, but only if you lose your delusions and stop acting as if you're settling & could do better than someone closer to your age.

      Delete
    12. So George Clooney is not attractive? I lot of 30 y o women would disagree.

      Delete
    13. Nope. George Clooney looks like an old man. None of my peers speak of as being hot. Only women 40+ mention him, and they are just thinking of him when younger. Celebrities ride on their image; their youth gets preserved on film. Johnny Depp is....excuse me, WAS hot about 15 years ago. Now he is just a silly middle aged man riding on reputation. I have no doubt young women date him....but he is wealthy, famous, talented and has his youthful self imbedded into pop culture. Not your typical middle aged man, and even still, no longer hot.

      Delete
  5. This is a fantastic post, Andrew. It goes along with what I've been thinking for awhile, which is this: if women want to snag marriage-minded men while they're in their twenties, they need to do more to work on themselves, or "come into themselves" as you so elegantly put it.

    I think that's really what I want to do with my blog: help women see that a relationship isn't just about external attractiveness (although that's a huge part of getting a relationship). It's also about internal attractiveness, i.e. developing your maturity and sense of self and not turning into an entitlement princess. I'm gonna think on this... you might have inspired my next post!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I know that 20-something girls are generally the most attractive ones no matter which age group of men you ask (if we take care of ourselves, that is).
    But although most men will prefer to date a younger girl, their options are limited - when people say that men are so lucky to remain attractive as they grow older, I think they are very influenced by the media. I'm 22 and older men sometimes catch my interest. Still, I am the only girl I know my age that is remotely interested in men over 40.

    Most men aren't George Clooney or Clive Owen, after all. Since most men in their 40s and 50s don't have a shot with 20-something girls, I assume they don't even bother to consider them if they happen to be divorced/looking for a woman. I'm wondering if this piece of 'realism' makes other women more attractive to them? A 50 year old man who goes out with a 35 year old woman must feel lucky, or does he still compare her to younger women, knowing that they're out of his league?

    My mum is 55 - she works out and she's naturally beautiful. My stepfather is 72, he is not handsome, but very socially intelligent and good with women. They've been together 16 years. I sometimes wonder if men his age still feel 'blessed' to be with a much younger woman, even if she isn't "young".
    Are you ever capable of becoming so realistic that the idea of being with a very young woman doesn't even cross your mind? I'm already worried about growing older and I know women never stop comparing themselves to younger women. I sometimes wonder if men are more or less critical of ourselves than we are.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes and no. No, in the sense that even if he can ignore the younger women, he cannot deny that they are more attractive. But yes, a man can ignore younger women, knowing that he has no chance with them. So I think you can relax a little! Guys aren't constantly fixated on 22 year olds.

      Delete
    2. I've often wondered the same thing as anon at Sept 13/12.I know you must be tired of hearing all the "I look younger than my age comments," but I frequently get told that I do. I'm also slim, yet curvy, and often told that I'm attractive. I will be 30 later this year and I sometimes wonder that if I marry a guy in his late 30's or even early 40's if he would still consider me a younger woman and feel lucky to have me, or if would think that he's settling because I'm not 22?

      Delete
    3. My brother is 43yrs old and he is constantly hit on by 20 yr old women. Tall men over 6ft feet , who are fi and good looking, look good at any age.

      Delete
  7. I'm 38 and hotter than ever, or think I am. To try very hard to maintain my beauty and workout 7x a week and weigh same as I did in high school. I'm confident in myself and in the bedroom. I think I'm quite a catch. It's funny how when I was 25 I was so insecure. I feel I can get any man now, and if I can't, I don't take it personally!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "I'm 38 now and hotter than ever"

      Sure.

      Delete
  8. The primo age is 17 for girls and 21 for boys. After that you are over the hill.








    ReplyDelete
  9. Andrew or men? How do you know when a women is beginning to age? I am in my late twenties and have faint wrinkles under eyes which most women younger than me seem to have according to my observations (in fact I have seen women younger than me with worse wrinkles)..other than that my weight is the same, hair the same..everything the same! I get carded frequently, my boobs are firm (34D, no work done) and have not sagged at all and I'm small..I hear that many men do not find women over 25 attractive but what if she looks the same as then? I'm confused.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is primarily a matter of skin quality and behavior (maturity). It's hard to say if the wrinkles under your eyes make a difference. If you want to e-mail me a picture I could tell you, but it is also possible that you act older than other women - though this should serve to make you more attractive, not less.

      Delete
    2. "I hear that many men do not find women over 25 attractive"

      Men? You mean 14 year old boys

      Delete
  10. I read somewhere that by age 26-29 most women have begun the decline to sexual obsolescence.
    True? False?

    ReplyDelete
  11. What if your starting the game late? I am a woman just learning to date at 29, feel like weight has been keeping me from dating normally earlier years. Now working to lose it all and seeing some attention come from this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Read all three segments of the Female Game for Girls in Their Teens/20s/30s and act accordingly.

      Delete
  12. I think some women peak later if they have certain features. What mainly happens when you get older is that the level of estrogen goes down, you lose 'volume' in your face, the face gets skinnier and lips get thinner. If you have a typical babyface with chubby cheeks, you might actually look better once you begin to "age" (by that I mean early thirties).
    My mother was this way - when she was young, she was always labeled "cute" (very feminine, girly-looking face), but she was more of a classic beauty as she grew a bit older. Her featured became more defined.
    A woman's peak will always be before 35, but it doesn't have to be 22.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I would agree with this comment above, and argue that there are exceptions to the generality of the chart in this post. I have always had a "baby" face, with somewhat round cheeks and an innocent look, I don't know how else to describe it. When I was in my 20's, people usually mistook me for a teenager and it would really irritate me. Now, I am 36 and get mistaken for being in my mid-20's. But, my face has thinned out and my features are more distinguished in a way that -- whereas I got called "pretty" and "cute" in my 20's -- I am now told I am striking, HOT and beautiful. I am newly single after a divorce and take good care of myself. I live in a college town and would venture to say I'm in better shape than a lot of the coeds by what I see on campus. I think I am much more attractive now than I was in my 20's and men seem to respond to that...men in their 20's and early 30's hit on me all the time, and my last two boyfriends were each several years younger than me and both "good catches," could have women much younger than me easily. I know this sounds sorta vain, and I don't mean it to be, but I just think this post paints a very broad stroke of women "over a certain age" when I think there is a broad spectrum of variables to how well we age, take care of ourselves, and work to make ourselves the best version we can be, both externally and internally.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I totally agree with you. I am 35,divorced and have a child. I have also had a baby face, and chubby cheek, people thought I was a teenager when I was in my twenties,and constantly told me I was a lovely little girl. Now men I have dated always said I looked young, fresh and beautiful. I have always been taking care of my skin though, and never put on much make up.

      Delete
    2. Here is the thing those younger men that have responded to you have not ultimately chosen you as a life partner. Sure I respond to hotter older women and have short term sexual relationships with them but I will in all probability chose someone in their late twenties, early thirties as my life partner. For the record, I am 39

      Delete
  14. Hi Andrew

    I'm wondering where in the world you live? I live in the UK and don't know any women in their 20s who are interested in men old enough to be their fathers. Women "prefering" older men is perhaps one of the greatest lies ever told. It is a lie men like you tell themselves to avoid facing the reality of ageing. It is also a contol thing. If the old guy can convince women they have few choices, then they are more likely to go for an old man because that's all they think they can get. But most women with good self esteem don't think like this.

    The truth is that women do not fancy old men any more than men fancy old women. Why on earth would they? When I look around at everyday life, I see friends, colleagues, family members etc. with people around their own age. Even those who have gone onto ssecond or third marriages are again invarably with people their own age. I have travelled extensively and never come across a woman in her 20s married to a guy in their 50s. I an not saying that this doesn't happen but large age gap relationships are the exception and not the norm. Most everyday people accept they are ageing and the conotations that this brings. Others howver don't deal with the process well and come up with all manner of excuses as a result of denial (which is a very powerful emotion). In fact I don't think a month goes buy that I don't hear a person say that: they don't look their age, don't dress their age, don't act their age etc.....But of couse they do. A man of 40 to 55 is NOT as attractive as a 30 year old man...there is no comparison. What planet are you living on??? Even Brad Pitt at 48 looks nothing like he did at 30. Also how is an old guy going to performat that age in the bedroom??? I am in my 40s but if my head is turned on the street it is by a young man in his 20s or maybe 30s. I tend not to notice men my own age much and men in their 50s are pretty invisible (much the same as with men looking at women). However if I were to go into a new relationship it would be with someone my own age as this would work best. I would not go for someone older and know no women that would either. Perhaps men of your age won't compromise, but women won't either (unless they're desperate). Get real.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Interesting... I live in London, UK also and know of 4 English roses in their 20s who got married this year - two to fiances aged 40, one to 42, and another to 38...

      Delete
    2. Andrew lives (or at least at one point lived) in Washington, DC. He's mentioned it in some older posts.

      Delete
    3. I'm 28 and I think I would want a partner aged between 30-38..not too far off my age but still older.

      Delete
    4. @Joolz

      I'm 29 and have seen attractive men in their 40s and 50s. I'm not sure I would ever date or marry someone that much older, but there are men in that age group who are still quite attractive. They also tend to me more mature than younger men, so that might be another reason a woman in her 20s or 30s might find men in that demographic attractive.

      Delete
    5. I'm a 39 year old guy married to a beautiful 28 year old woman, in the US. Not uncommon even here. Outside the western countries, it's even more common. Granted I'm decent looking and stay fit, but that's not hard to do. Bonus... No kids!

      Delete
    6. I'm 28 and I would be reluctant to date anyone over the age of 38 (10 years older). They would have to be amazing. Then again, I live in a country where it is somewhat frowned upon to have a massive age gap..for example if I brought home a 40 year old to my family, they would be wondering what's wrong with me..or more so what's wrong with him. My dating range would be from 27 to 38 but to me the 30 to 34 age bracket is most attractive. And most men in that age bracket specify women in my age bracket.

      Delete
    7. 100% agree. No woman in her 30s is checking out 50+ year old men. Even iconically sexy actors like Brad Pitt & Johnny Depp are riding on their reputation & past image, not on their actual looks anymore. I used to think they were very hot when in their 20s-30s, but not anymore, and they are waaaaaay better looking than the average man, by leaps & bounds. Once they hit their late 40s & especially the big 5-0, they lost their sex appeal.

      George Clooney is not sexy at all - he looks haggard & worn out. No younger woman wants these men for their looks, and they have the benefit of not only fame, money & talent, but also a public history of once being gorgeous (so that the IDEA of them is what attracts women). The average man has none of that, and so no young woman will want him, but he will lie to himself to feel better about it.

      There is a book out there which shows that over the past few centuries in Western culture, the average age gap between marriage partners is...wait for it...2 years. That's it. On average, the man is 2 years older. It's a great myth that men are commonly much older. That only occurred in ruling classes where such matches were arranged for power/money reasons.

      Also, the more freedom women have & the more common it is for people to marry by choice & not arrangement, the less age gaps there are in marriages.

      Even in the middle ages, while it is true girls were married at 16 or so, the boys married at about 18, so they were still only a few years older. It was not a matter of teenage girls being married off to adult men, but to teenage boys.

      This highly suggests that women greatly prefer men who are peers, not older men, and that historically & traditionally, marriages are between peers, not young women & older men.

      Delete
  15. I'm 26 and to my great surprise... dating an amazing 43-year old man. For over a year now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. rather you than me love.

      Delete
    2. Lol..if you were 40, he would be repulsive..trust me

      Delete
    3. If she were 40, she'd be repulsive too.

      Delete
    4. He is after your youth..don't give the rest of it to him unless you are sure he is going to stick around after it passes.

      Delete
    5. Age is secondary, the person is what counts. There are 40-year olds that are OLD and there are 40-year olds that aren't. Heck, I have met 20-year olds that were old too. Its much more in attitude and life choices than anything else. Good for you, if you are happy, that's all that matters.

      Delete
    6. At 26 and female why would you waste your youth on a man 43? Men get boring with age and less sexual.

      Delete
    7. Right, Tracy, and women in their mid to late 20's likewise become, not just boring, but dreadfully dull.

      Delete
  16. What I cannot figure out is what makes you think that women become "more attractive" internally as they age.

    If she got married at 26 or so, maybe, but the ex carousel riders and those are the ones you would ultimately deal with as a man of around 40 have lots and lots of baggage, are getting increasingly desperate and neurotic and develop a bitter attitude.

    You would too, if your whole selfimage was based on being treated like royalty due to ultimately fleeting circumstances and if you had to realize that you squandered your best chance of getting what you now find out you really wanted after all.

    For those women, the overall line hits rock bottom at 45, they are literally unsmashable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How ridiculous. A single woman over 30 has not necessarily been promiscuous. Such prejudice & narrow-mindedness! She could've been in a long-term relationship with one man that never led to marriage, she could have been comfortable going long periods of being single, perhaps she was not in high demand (there is the occasional ugly duckling who blossoms later than her peers), or maybe she actually has moral standards (and that's WHY she hasn't settled for just any man).

      Young women are not treated like royalty. We can be treated like objects & literally be spit at & have things thrown at us by angry young men who "can't have us". There is no privilege in that. You clearly have some misogynistic ideas that are total distortions of reality.

      And FYI, your view of promiscuous women & suspicions of unmarried women over 45 (or even younger) are also held by women for men. I've frequently been told that there is "something wrong" with a man not married by 40 or 35 even. A man having a high number of sexual partners is NOT attractive to women. It's repulsive and WILL be held against you also.

      Delete
  17. Men lose their looks much earlier than women, bald with a pot belly in their early 30s....and once the tetosterone is gone at at 50, forget it...sorry boys, looks matter...she might marry you for your money, but she is sleeping with her trainer and hoping you keel over.....I just divorced a younger man for getting fat and bald and thus; whiney and impotent...love being back out in the dating world...only tall, thick haired flat bellies apply...shallow??..lmao...yep....just like a dude..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol. Please.

      Delete
    2. Yes, girl! And you forgot those *hairless legs* (sometimes even with the addition of those fascinating varicose veins - - on legs AND balls - - and speaking of balls, has anyone measured the degree of SAG, per year, in a man's nuts, after age fifty?) and the saggy man-boobs (even the ones who work out often get those horrid womanly nipples that - - I'm afraid - - will only impress the latent lesbians). Old guys: time to put on your glasses before taking a good "hard" look in the mirror. I write "hard" in quotes, because - - I hope you'll forgive the indelicacy, BUT *that* will never be a word any woman will ever be using to describe any of your important parts, again! Get real, old men: you'd be lucky to find some old broad who would take pity on your old ass and give you the time of day. If you *are* incredibly lucky enough to find such a patient lady, better get down on those arthritic knees, thank your maker, and be real nice to that old girl!

      Delete
    3. Sadly men over 50 don't even have an ass...concave. gross.

      Delete
    4. Damn, you sound very bitter and bitchy. No wonder he couldn't get it up for you.

      Delete
    5. Internal attractiveness: zero

      Delete
  18. Men always think they are still "happening"..especially when they are over forty...you are Grandpas, nobody is looking at you as a man they would want unless they need their rent paid...you look 45, your wife didn't want you and the 20 somethings aren't hard up....unless they are fat and ugly....wake up and grow up...gross

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You sound 17. Wait till you're 30 hahaha

      Delete
    2. wow bitter? the fact is that young women own the sexual marketplace while older women practically have to beg. And older men own the sexual marketplace while young men practically have to beg. both sexes have it good at times and have it bad at other times. that's life. do men have it better or do women? neither. it's just a matter of knowing how and when to play your cards.

      Delete
    3. As you grow older, you will discover a great deal more than you currently know.

      Delete
  19. Actually, men are always shocked to find that they are still happening post-40. Pleasantly shocked.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Delusional. Likely bald and short. Good luck....

      Delete
  20. Lol, some of the comments I have read are about as superficial as they come. The whole point of life is to grow, mature, and transcend. Anyone of us could be mowed over by a bus tomorrow and wake up in a hospital room permanently disfigured for life. Even if we don't have this happen time will pass regardless and age will take its toll. This toll taken by time is only negative if we choose to place shallow, contemporary views on external beauty. When I die, whether it be in an hour or a hundred years, I want to be around people that love me for who I am, and have been there through thick and thin over many years. Therefore I care for my body well as it is the vessel through which I navigate life, but mainly I focus on being loving and contributing to others and the world. Our bodies are temporary vessels, and judging someone on this with such intensity is beyond foolish. The little graph above comparing rates of "internal" versus "physical" attractiveness and when the two intersect highest isn't scientific by any means, it is purely personal opinion and speculation. What's more is how superficial the assessment is. A good person is beautiful at 20 yrs of age or 80 yrs of age equally. It is trite to say that something as precious as a human life can be judged and graded like a commodity to the benefit of an individual looking for a "perfect partner". It would behoove of this person to look at what they have to give as a great, caring partner instead of worrying about silly bs such as when a woman/man is at their most "worthwhile" in terms of arbitrarily calculated "internal" and "external" factors. People are not "things" to be used for ones own benefit in such a manner. Do you really think you are so flawless, invincible, and perfect yourself? Lets have some humanity and love for others, and get over this waste of time crap when we all need to be cared for and appreciated. Is this really how we want our children and the world in general to see how we strive to live and think? I think we all know we can do much better than this, and it would benefit every single one of us to not play games like this with other human beings or with ourselves. We are smart enough to act better than this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This post is written by someone that knows little of the real world. Honestly, get off your high horse and stop preaching. Obviously, people choose partners based on personality and genuine kindness. But that factor of choosing a life partner is not something that can be taught on a blog. You are who you are.

      As far as all that life and death mention, don't be naive. Most people live in the present but plan for the future. Because living as if you are going to die tomorrow is foolish, hence foolishness of the YOLO term. You probably won't get hit by a bus or any of that other stuff. If you believed that, I am sure you wouldn't be wasting your time writing on this blog. Think about it, really?

      Physical attraction is assessed way before personal chemistry. This is by both men and women. And there are things you can do to be more physically appealing. That is the point of this post. People want to have it all. And if you don't think that is realistic, just don't read this and watch others work on themselves in both realms.

      There is a difference between being smart and wise. You speak as if you have not lived enough. If you disagree, be wise enough to hold your tongue. Because most people do not agree with you. People have different values; don't judge what you don't understand.

      Delete
    2. Just because lots of people do something does not make it right, preferable, or impossible to change. I have become less concerned with appearances of others as I have aged. If you can judge me, the blogger can judge other humans by making this blog, then I have a right to my own personal opinion being expressed as well via commenting. So no, I don't have to hold my tongue, I am merely speaking an opposing view. That's why we are all commenting on what was written, to put in our two cents. We all have a right to interpret writing. How can we ever learn anything if we don't explore opposing view points and really examine why something is or isn't important to us individually? To some people you are right, looks are important. To others looks aren't as important though, not everyone is in line with the author. So there isn't any set "reality", it is individual. If we could improve the world for the better, why not at least try?

      In regards to dying and life, my point is that life is entirely uncertain. We have a certain amount of control, but not absolute control. So it would be good to be right with ourselves, and the best we can be as people personally where we stand at present.

      I also fail to see why mentioning it is good to be more caring to someone regardless of how they look in terms of number of wrinkles (or lack thereof)is such a repugnant thing to say. Please tell me why we as human beings should be more callous to each other, especially when we can control how we behave? when we talk about other people like they are "things" how is that kind? What is so immature and off base for simply suggesting perhaps we consider that this article isn't kind, and the world could use more kindness? It is just an opinion, and as valuable as any other opinion/viewpoint.

      Delete
    3. What I don't understand is why people have to be so cruel to each other
      I appalled you and agree with everything you said. We're here to build each other up. Instead of
      Hurt each other. We're all getting older and it is just part of life. But there's a big world out there and all of this just seems so stupid and unimportant in the big picture. I think some people need to see the rest of the world and how much more they is to see and understand and they would understand why I say the is very trivial.
      Brigitte!

      Delete
  21. Obviously you put more weight on external beauty than internal beauty. I'm trying to be wiser to learn to appreciate internal beauty more.

    ReplyDelete
  22. You wrote "The graph is not meant to hone in on ..."

    You mean "home," not "hone."

    ReplyDelete
  23. I think any one who judges people soley on looks is shallow and insignificant. I don't say tis cause I'm unattractive.I'm pretty.I just dislike arrogant ,haughty people who use their looks to get what they want or make other men/women feel bad cause they are not a 10. Doesn't matter what your age .we should treat all people with love ,respect and compassion. If you see someone being left out cause they are not as attractive or out going or are shy include them in your group or invite them to sit with you. Be open and resceptive to even those who you think are less attractive. Everyone is going to get old the tweenty somethings are going to be the 40 and 50s some day. So before you decide a women is too old remember you will be there someday. Treat them with repect .

    ReplyDelete
  24. Here you go girls.

    http://heartiste.wordpress.com/2014/10/27/the-female-total-attractiveness-age-curve/

    Ouch. Reality is as hard to hit as the Wall.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Dude, this is an absurd curve. A girl of 18 is as attractive as the same girl in her mid 40s? That's just absurd.

    Women age differently -- some women are attractive for a lot longer. Sandra Bullock is a hottie at 50.

    But for most women, they reach the peak between 18 and 25, start to go downhill slightly, then really decline in their 30s with another big drop in their 40s. By the time they reach 50 they aren't physically attractive at all.

    The decline is even faster if they balloon up due to excessive carbs, or engage in other forms of hard living. Girls who have been out partying and getting laid in their 20s are ugly harridans by 30. And no, their inner beauty does not suddenly shine.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let's see what you look like. I am sure you are no great shakes in the looks department.

      Delete
  26. As a healthy male, who has many a healthy male as a friend, I can assure you that a 60-year old girl does not have the same external attractiveness as a 17-year old lady :)

    ReplyDelete
  27. Some of you are such keyboard warriors. I'm 29 years old and I look more attractive than I have ever done in my life. At 16-25 I was very average looking and poor. I got a job, got money and bettered myself looks wise, clothes wise..would I want a 55 year old man? Probably not, but if I was 40? Maybe. Some 55 y.o men are still attractive JUST AS some 50 plus women are.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Too much emphasis on age these days I find. Anyone over 30 considered "old" is disturbing whether man or woman..I find the age debate a complete load of baloney. Old is not till your sixties, then you're getting old. Those men that do a woman down because she is 30 and not 22 are usually those nerdy geeky types who got ignored by beautiful women, so they take their bitterness out on women they consider old now that they have gone over the age of 25. I wouldn't want a man like that anyways. I like handsome men and am dating one at the moment. He's 40 and lovely. I did date a nerdy man last year thinking he'd appreciate me more boy was I ever wrong. He belittles and humiliated me at every turn.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen. I want to be with a man that actually likes women. Not a man that only likes women when they are 20. I'm creeped about by most of the responses her and tend to think that a lot of the male responses are based on their desire to try and hold power over women while degrading their ages. There are men out there that actually like women. That's the kind of guy I'm looking for.

      Delete
  29. You are a fucking ripoff artist.
    http://therationalmale.com/2012/06/04/final-exam-navigating-the-smp/

    http://therationalmale.com/2012/06/12/smv-in-girl-world/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your posts came out 5 months after mine.

      Delete
    2. Lol... He isn't very rational is he?

      Delete
    3. "You are a fucking ripoff artist."

      "Your posts came out 5 months after mine."

      -------------------------

      Heh. Whoops.

      Delete
  30. Every man over 45 should Google "men who look like lesbians". ...cause with the lack of testosterone you are pretty sad. Nobody wants to be with and old, saggy butt bald big-bellied dude. Even if they have money. ...that includes their wived. Men are soooo delusional. ..especially the short ones...lolololololok

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. heh heh say that again when you're 35.

      Delete
    2. you sound fat

      Delete
  31. Hey Andrew, I am 27 with a baby-face. From what guys have told me (guys who ask me out not my guy friends) I look somewhere between 22~25. All the guys I go out with are in that age range. I know I should avoid younger guys like the plague but men my age or few years older almost never approach me.

    what can I do to change that?




    ReplyDelete
  32. I don't think this is true for everyone. I used to dress slutty in my younger days (18-22) to get attention because I was insecure. Guys would glance, but I get a lot more glances as well as lingering STARES now. I'm 33.
    People typically guess my age to be around 22-25, with some guessing as high as 28 or as low as 20. I'm in decent shape physically, have nice boobs, and full cheeks. I have no lines, or jowls, or wrinkles. Maybe it's because since my early teens I've worn sunscreen on my face and neck every day.
    It's annoying because I get carded everywhere. It makes trips to the corner store suck because carrying my heavy ass purse AND a 12 pack? Geez...
    And since I go around braless these days (because bras cause your boobs to sag), you'd think men would stare at my tits all day long. But, nope. They always stare at my face. And sometimes they REALLY stare. It can get creepy. I mean, they do eventually look at my boobs, but then back to the face. Regardless of whether I wear makeup or not. Actually I think they stare MORE when I don't wear makeup.
    I also noticed men stare harder when I wear my hair in its natural state: long and curly. I take care to make sure it isn't frizzy and wild. But men don't stare at my hair.

    ReplyDelete

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.